a tornado until she crashes

Each day I take one photo on Instagram of something I am thankful for in my life.
I’ve learned a couple of things on Instagram.

  • Everyone on Instagram eats much more beautiful food than I do.
  • There is some kind of meaning to hashtags that I still don’t get. Maybe I’m too old. Or too country.
  • My sister likes donuts and donut shaped food even more than I thought.
  • I evidently am very thankful for when my daughter sleeps.

I’ve noticed a trend that I gravitate towards celebrating when my daughter is asleep. FireCracker never stops…moving, singing, dancing, talking, talking REALLY loud. She is constant motion…like that little tornado in cartoons. Except for when she crashes. The girl does not need a bed or anything soft. In the middle of motion she can fall asleep. Anywhere. Anytime. Other than her own very cute bed at bedtime.

5.12sleeper-6Looking at recent random moments of her crashing, made me think about why she is so easy going in regards to being able to sleep anywhere. I’m pretty sure it has something to do with being the youngest in an active family…she kind of had to just learn to sleep wherever. So very different from the obsessive schedule following that was a part of her oldest brothers early years.


(don’t worry, she was in the shade and only uncovered long enough for a photo)

I forget how he was really just a baby when he became a big brother. They are a little over 15 months apart.

She has the cutest bed in the house. She’s only slept in it a handful of times. But she sure does get a lot of sleep.

Have I mentioned she sleeps in her brothers’ room? Yep, on a pallet on the floor because another bed can’t be squeezed in there. She tells me she’ll sleep in her room when her little sister is here to share it with….

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  • Andy - that is so sweet and cute about her sleeping in her room when her sister is here to share it. i love it. love the pic of her out between the two rooms. that cracks me up and also love the one of her sleeping like a frog, that’s the only way to describe it. precious. they are all great. good for her that she can just sleep anywhere. πŸ™‚ have a great day

  • Ari - Wow, those photos are absolutely adorable! I don’t think my 2.5 year old would ever stop long enough to fall asleep either- except in her crib (i’m not brave enough to give her a big girl bed yet) for naps and bedtime. She is too busy to be still!

  • Linda - I am the youngest in my family, too—the only girl with three older brothers. My brothers shared a bedroom and I was so jealous that they all got to be together and I had to sleep alone. In fact, for MANY years (till I was way too old to admit I was doing it), I would sneak into their room after everyone was asleep and sleep, just so I could be in the same room with them. πŸ™‚

  • Heather - Love it…so much sleeping sweetness. Blessings!

  • giozi - I started smiling and then saying ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
    Is so cuteeeeee
    Love her poses to sleep ha ha ha

  • Amy - Firecracker is so cute! I have two little boys and just found out that we’ll be adding another son. My heart longed for a daughter so bad, so the past few days have been difficult. Please don’t misunderstand, I love my boys so much and am so thankful to be having a healthy 3rd, but just had hopes in one day having a daughter. We do not plan on having any more, and I know God has a plan and believes that I am meant to raise 3 Godly men. Your blog inspires me to be a better Mom and hopes that maybe one day we could afford to adopt a sweet little girl who is longing for a family of her own. Thank you.

  • Jen Spilker - Love that. There is nothing sweeter than a sleeping child.

  • amanda torres - I love everything about this post. I’ve always wanted a child who will crash out in the middle of an activity just so I can snap a picture and laugh. So far, I’ve only snapped a few from a car seat. What great memories!

  • Brooke - Don’t worry, I don’t get hashtags either πŸ™‚ I love all these pictures of her sleeping, so sweet. Love that you put fabric on the front of your moby. I have thought several times about gluing or sewing some amy butler on the front of mine…

    And…how sweet…she will sleep in her room when she has a sister to share it with?! GOODNESS…so sweet!

  • Seamingly Sarah - That is so sweet. I love looking back at how quickly they go from baby to toddler. My youngest is 13 months now and her head is starting to pop off of her shoulders. The appearance of neck means the end of baby for me. =( And FireCracker reminds me of how my 4 year was/is. She’d nap in the hallway outside her room often. But she is still a ball of energy, right up to the moment she sleeps. It’s like watching a 24/7 spastic dance.

  • Christi Smith - i call my daughter the “toddler tornado” because she is the same way!! so so cute. i love this post.

  • Nicole - The photo of her on the blanket right outside the door is quite possibly the funniest thing I have ever seen. So cute. Our middle one is like this…he will be talking and talking and all of a sudden it’s quiet and you look and he’s fallen asleep.

  • Midwest Magnolia - Melissa Lewis - Well, you have 4 so I’m sure you have experienced it all. My 2 1/2 yr old boy is a tornado too but has recently found it difficult to take a nap, no matter how tired he is. I’m a little jealous of your little ones ability to fall asleep anywhere (that one on the floor in b/w rooms is just precious). But, since you are the mom of 4, God only knows how much you really do need firecracker to have her naps. So what a blessing for you! Love these pictures.

  • ellen patton - I love that she likes to sleep in her brothers’ room. That’s so sweet. (I have 3 brothers too.)

  • Natalie - That picture of her sleeping on the floor is fantastic! It looks like she walked through the doorway and dropped!

  • Jen @ RamblingRenovators - I would take a million pictures of that sleeping beauty too. Love how she can just sleep on the floor. Firecracker is such a perfect name for her – she burns bright and goes out quickly. Adorable.

  • Amanda - Ashley – I started following you blog when firecracker was in the hospital. I couldn’t get over how cute she was, even amidst all the things happening to her. Your blog often brings me smiles, especially your photos of the kids. I have a special place in my heart for firecracker. It’s been a rough week in my life, and these photos made me smile today. They made me feel warm and fuzzy inside. Thank you, for sharing your beautiful family, and their wishes and dreams and your journey. With love, A.

  • Shanna P. - I just love that you share your family with us! She reminds me of my little one everytime I read about her! She is just so cute! What a blessing!

  • Rachael - Aww! I love sleeping pictures. My three kids all MUST sleep in their beds, in their rooms, with blackout shades and a sound machine. But at least they sleep right?
    Maybe my next child will be able to sleep on the go?

  • Mary McDaniel - As someone who is not yet a mother, but hopes to be someday, I find this post both hilarious and awesome! I love that she falls asleep anywhere, and that she likes to be near her brothers!

  • Beth Saukas - Firecracker looks so sweet sleeping. And it’s beautiful her connection with her sibblings.
    May God keep blessing you and your family everyday!

  • jenny - I LOVE these sweet sleeping photos! There is such a sweetness and innocence to little ones when they sleep….I mean, they are sweet when they are awake too of course…but you know what I mean. Those are precious moments to capture.

  • ashlee - Gosh she reminds me SO much of my Mercy. She too never stops. She too is a tornado. But i must say her purpose in our family is so evident. When we went through the hardest 2 years of our life we have had this crazy hilarious bundle of joy that makes us laugh all day long. With 7 kids (soon to be 8) mine always fall asleep somewhere random. I do try to lay her down but somedays she wont stop until she is ready. Just like a tornado:)

  • Amy K. - Oh! I can just feel how warm & squishy she is, and hear her even breathing…. these pictures are the next best thing to holding a sleepy toddler body myself. ?

  • Flossie - With my son, I sooooo wanted him to sleep in his bed. And now that is the ONLY place he will sleep. For real. While I’m grateful that he does sleep so well in his bed, I sometimes wish that he could sleep other places too. I guess with children you just pick your poison, eh? Love the pictures. She clearly just runs out of steam…

  • Kristin - She is adorable. I feel like I have her personality twin as a daughter, and she is about to have a baby sister to share a room with!

  • Brooke Leigh - The last statement completely melted my heart. ♥ I also have a little tornado that came sleep anywhere at anytime (except her beautifully constructed bedroom) What is it with little girls & not wanting to sleep in their gorgeous bedrooms? (probably the cutest rooms in the house!) πŸ™‚

  • Emily - I take a lot of pictures of my son sleeping, too. It’s the best time to guarantee he won’t be a motion blur. I have a feeling his little brother will be more like firecracker – sleeping anytime, anywhere. I love sleeping baby pictures πŸ™‚

  • Moriah - So cute and I can totally relate. I have a tornado too…who doesn’t like to sleep in his bed. Hmm

  • Tiffany - She is so cute. She will be so excited when her sister arrives. The hashtags are a way of labeling your photos. Especially for the photo a day challenges.

  • Lisa J - Hilarious! Love how when she’s done,she’s done and just sleeps. It’s a brilliant ability to have, especially when you get older! Buckets of fun – all of your family, and wonderful she is wating for her sister… xxx

  • Kimberly - There’s nothing sweeter than a sleeping baby! Until she says she’s waiting use her room until her little sister arrives. πŸ™‚ What a sweet girl.

  • Tammy - We call our lil’est girl a hurricane, she is almost 3 yrs old. I love that Firecracker sleeps w/ her big bro’s. My lil hurricane sleeps w/ her big bro, also. Firecracker will be such an amazing big sister. You and yours are in my thoughts and prayers.

  • Debbie C - She is adorable. And yes, a sleeping child is a beautiful child. ;D

  • Abigail C - So cute πŸ™‚ Love the history of sleeping pictures.

  • Kristin S - My fave is the doorway crash. That’s one tired girl to fall asleep on the floor in a doorway!

    it is a good lesson for us all to rest when we are tired.

    I love that she wants to share her room with her sister!

  • Ingrid - Oh my that is the sweetest thing to say (about waiting for her sister to share her room).
    Also, I would feel I was missing out on the fun if I had three older brothers too!

  • Jenna - Hands down one of my favorite posts πŸ™‚

  • Stefanie - Oh my… she is too cute! Love that she’s waiting for her sister to sleep in her room with her – those two will be quite a pair πŸ™‚

  • able mabel - Oh how I love this! so precious!!

  • Rachael - That was such a sweet post – I realized half way thru that I was trying to be quiet, so I didn’t wake her up! πŸ™‚ My 2 boys also love
    sleeping in random places, it used to scare me at first to go in and check on one of them and they were not there! My oldest(6) would be under the bed, or on a chair, in some funny position. My youngest (3) just started sleeping on top of his pillow, inside the pillow case! Just last night I came to check on them and my oldest was sleeping in bed with his brother – such a lovely moment to see!

  • Clayre - Wow these pictures are so great! I love how they really capture her personality; I can picture her running like crazy and then literally crashing in a heap on the floor asleep! How cute! What kind of baby carrier is that with the brown and flower print? I am currently preggo and have a toddler so I am in the market for a good carrier so I can be a bit more hands free! πŸ™‚

  • Anna - sooo sweet. i loved the picture of her crashing on the floor between rooms. how funny.

    and i literally LOLed when I read the part about how obsessed your sister is with donuts. everytime i see a donut shop or see a donut or hear the word donut, i think of Lesley.

  • Georgia - Probably the reason you take so many photos of her sleeping is because it is the only time she is still enough…precious pictures

  • stpehanie - YOU ARE INCREDIBLE! this is such a fantastic idea and all your shots are breathtakingly sweet. you are so talented, such a great eye. this would be a great project to keep up and make into a blurb book!

    thank you for another wonderful post


  • Jules - Fabulous shots… and love her last comment! Guess it goes to prove that women are versatile creatures, we learn it very young.

  • Christina - I follow your Instagram and always see the lovely photos. The ones of your sleeping daughter always make me giggle a little, because my son is EXACTLY the same way. He go-go-goes all day and then crashes where ever, in whatever position. The kid never stops talking. Of course I always have to take a photo to share of his various spots. I think the most recent one was on his old toddler mattress that’s hanging around in the living room, with his little Ikea tent on top of it. He was all snuggled around his stuffed kitty. I will miss these days.

  • Anna Schroeder - This post made me giggle. My oldest is Firecracker’s age and he gives me a run for my money just the same. I have similar pictures of him passed out on the floor after going full-speed all day. So sweet.

  • Katrina - I just figured out the fun of hashtags. If you hashtag a keyword in within your caption, you can click on it and go see other pictures that have been tagged with the same word. For example, I tagged a picture of my dog as “my cute #minpin”. When I clicked on #minpin, I was led to a bunch of pictures of miniature pinschers. I find it really fun to see other people’s takes on the same subject I am taking pics of.

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - OH my heavens. Song is going to love her. I always wanted to big sister (i’m the oldest) and if I ever had to choose a big sister, I’d choose firecracker.

  • Julie - I love the pictures!!! I had to laugh because ‘evidently I love it when my son sleeps’ too! πŸ˜‰

  • Julie - (whoops! meaning that I take tons of Instagram pictures of him sleeping too!)

  • clare - She is just the cutest! Bless her xxx

  • lindsey - I laughed and cried at the post. I laughed at the hilarious positions and cried at the fact that my daughter NEVER falls asleep anywhere without a fight to get her there. She really doesn’t like to sleep. She tries everything she can to NOT sleep.

    And I don’t understand the hashtags either. Twitter is a total mystery to me.

  • Andrea - Beautiful little girl! And I love her zigzag/chevron quilt. May I ask where that is from?

  • Beck - The one where she is asleep in the doorway made my day! Just beautiful, and a little bit funny too! xx

  • Elizabeth - So, so cute!!! I want to just squeeze her.

  • Photo Friday: 5.11.12: Photography Blogs I Heart « ordinarycreative - […] aΒ tornadoΒ until she crashes Β» ashleyannphotography.com […]

  • patricia - what an adorable sleeping beauty you have!

  • Chris - I agree…what’s the deal with hashtags!! Don’t get them either! Love your blog!!

  • Zhanna - Firecracker!!! oh how I adore her! The pictures seriously made me laugh to the point of a tummy ache πŸ™‚ It’s just absolutely hilarious how she passes out wherever. Reminds me of my oldest daughter who at that age did exactly the same thing. Constantly dancing, laughing, singing, and LOTS of talking and would fall asleep within a snap of a finger. I have pictures of her sleeping under a nightstand, pictures of her sleeping in my closet with my shoes all over the place, pictures of her sleeping in the hallway with my sandals slipped over her wrists (she was pretending they were bracelets) . . . I can relate to this post. It makes me smile from ear to ear. Having a little girl like Firecracker in your life is the biggest blessing ever πŸ™‚ never a dull moment πŸ™‚